Friday, September 9, 2011

Week 2 Breakdown: South Carolina Still Cheating?

They must've paid him, right?

Last Saturday Aaron Murray spent a lot of time on his backside. Boise brought pressure often, especially in the second half as UGA was forced to pass the ball and play catch up. The Broncos had plenty of success getting to Murray as the Bulldog offensive line had a hard time adjusting to the Boise defensive front. UGA center Ben Jones claims that the mistakes from last week have been corrected.

They had better be. South Carolina is arguably a better defense than Georgia saw last week as they create multiple defensive mismatches along the line and in the secondary. As I stated yesterday UGA is moving defensive playmakers over to offense to try and generate a spark. It seems that SC is trying to generate the same kinda spark on defense.

Starting defensive end Melvin Ingram (6-2 276lbs) is moving inside allowing the Gamecocks to start all-world freshman Jadeveon Clowney at end opposite proven veteran Devin Taylor. I’m still convinced the Gamecocks cheated to get Clowney on campus; okay maybe I’m just jealous. Ingram is undersized as a DT and although he is a good pass rusher, may lack size to push the pile and take on blocks in the run game. This package reminds me of LSU's express package, which put 4 DEs on the field at the same time during passing downs. Murray may have to run for his life on third and long.

South Carolina also returns three players in the secondary for Saturday's game against Georgia. Senior cornerback Akeem Auguste is back from a fall camp foot injury and will provide depth behind starter C.C. Whitlock. Also returning are key DB backups Martay Maddox and former UGA recruit DeVonte Holloman, both of whom served one game suspensions last week against ECU. How convenient.

Ingram’s move inside along with SC’s penchant for running the 4-2-5 should provide Georgia’s power running game a chance to flourish providing the o-line has corrected the issues from a week ago. However, I’m not sure if the I formation will play a major role Saturday as Bobo showed a propensity for running out of the shotgun in week 1 against Boise.

Stephon Gilmore could potentially be a matchup nightmare in the secondary. Gilmore, who possesses great size at 6-1 and 193lbs, projects as an early pick in next years draft and can be a shutdown corner. The Gamecock starting secondary is a bit undersized as only three members of the two deep (10 DBs in that 4-2-5) are listed as over six feet. UGA will need Orson Charles and Aaron White to slip out and make plays against SC’s smaller DBs.

Obviously bottling up All-Americans Marcus Lattimore and Alshon Jeffery will be priority number one for Grantham and company. We’ve all seen the highlight reels; both of these players will be making a lot of money on Sundays in the near future. Jeffery will command double teams and Lattimore will cause night terrors for the linebackers if UGA allows him to get going. Expect 30 plus carries from the super sophomore, as Spurrier will ride him early and often. Sexual reference...of course not.

The Bulldog Defensive front has to create more pressure this week and frustrate South Carolina QBs Stephen Garcia and Conner Shaw. Whoever replaces Ogletree will have his hands full and will play a major role in containing the Gamecock offense. Rambo's return could be huge and will add experience and depth to a very thin UGA secondary. Baccari may be asked to come down into the box and provide much needed run support.

I refuse, for this week at least, to publish a pick against UGA (read between the lines if you must). I just hope Garcia implodes and Lattimore pulls a hamstring. Let’s deep fry some free range South Carolina chicken! GATA!

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